On the eve of the PTC User World Event 2009, at 6 PM sharp on Sunday June 7th, the doors to the ballroom of Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel in Orlando, Florida, swung open. That was the signal to the attendees meandering in the hallway by the registration booths that the Exhibit Hall, formally dubbed the Manufacturing Pavilion, was now open.
The prime real estate next to the gate belonged to Virtual Interconnect, a young company (launched in 2004) hailing from Glasgow, Scotland. Describing itself, the company states, “With a long established background in harness manufacturing, but faced with increasingly fierce competition from the low-labour rate economies, Virtual Interconnect personnel were forced to critically reappraise and redesign their own Wire Harness Design process.”
Evidently the staff decided to transform themselves into “a knowledge-based engineering company,” specializing in wire harness design. Judging from the numerous sections of the site with placeholder text (“Under construction! We’re still working hard on teh new site …”), the transformation is still in progress.
Virtual Interconnect offer SMARTBytes, small pieces of icon-driven JAVA applications for automating repetative tasks, and SMARTParts, a database of standard parts for designing routed systems. Both are aimed at those who use Pro/ENGINEER Routed Systems Designer, a package for 2D diagram creation, and Pro/CABLING, a module for creating wire harnesses in Pro/E assemblies. The company’s product line also includes RSD Simulate, for simulating the interconnect between power supplies and LRUs (line-replacable units), and DataTableCreator, for cataloging fibers, cables, and connectors.
Another company, B&W Software GmbH, set up shop adjecent Virtual Interconnect. To promote its SmartLibrary, the company was giving away a CD (SmartLibrary Lite) containing screws and pins. “You just select the placement references and configure the connection in a graphic user interface by choosing the type and size of screw, nut, washers, dowelpin, and bore types …,” the brochure reads. The Lite CD allows you to place up to 10 connections per assembly or session for free, but you’ll be prompted to get the commercial version if you need more.
In Adobe Systems’ corner, the company’s preferred solutions partner i-Cubed attracted a steady stream of traffic with the demonstration of its digital-rights management (DRM) solution, the i-Cubed extension to Adobe Lifecycle Enterprise Suite. In a draft of its presentation at the PTC User World Event, Mark Winnie, i-Cubed’s VP of technology and services, states, “DRM controls the usage of the data. Even after being downloaded, the intellectual property owner can determine who has rights to open, copy, print, or modify the data. The owner can even change those rights after the file is distributed.”
These vendors are others will be in the exhibit hall till Tuesday June 9th, doing their best to convince you their technologies are worth your investment dollars. For more, including a new player entering the rapid prototyping market, watch the video below.